|MLB Draft Update......|
|Written by Mike Kelly|
|Wednesday, 08 June 2011 20:02|
The 2011 Major League Baseball draft concluded its three-day exposition on Wednesday.The Southern Conference had 21 players selected during the 50-round draft. Five players were taken in final 19 rounds (31-50). Matt Leeds from the College of Charleston, who was named a third team Louisville Slugger All-America on Monday, was taken by the Texas Rangers in the 31st round.
Leeds, a red-shirt senior, batted .345 with 18 home runs and 80 runs-batted-in. Centerfielder Shawn Payne of Georgia Southern was taken in the 35th round by the San Francisco Giants. Payne batted .314 for the Eagles this season with six home runs and 39 RBI. Payne also had 33 stolen bases this year. He was onlycaught three times. He finished tied for sixth all-time in GSU history with 76 career stolen bases.
Payne, a 44th-round draft pick of the Kansas City Royals 2010 elected to come back for his senior year. One of three seniors on the team, he helped lead the Eagles to a 2011 Southern Conference Tournament Championship and a NCAA Regional appearance. The Eagles were eliminated following consecutive losses to South Carolina and North Carolina State in the Columbia Regional.
Righthanded pitcher Mitchell Conner of Elon went to the Milwaukee Brewers in the 36th round. Conner was 1-2 with a 2.32 earned-run-average in 26 relief appearances for the Phoenix. He had eight saves and he only gave up eight earned runs in 31 innings with 31 strikeouts.
Jeremy Null of Bunker Hill was taken by the Seattle Mariners in the 37th round. Null, the ace of the Bears pitching staff the last two years, led Bunker Hill to 55 wins and two conseutive Catawba Valley 2A Conference titles. The Bears, who are 55-2 in the last two seasons, made it to the Class 2A Western quarterfinals in 2010. The Bears lost to Starmount in the opening round of the state playoffs this season.
There were also three Charlotte-area players chosen on Wednesday. Righthander Chris McCue of Ardrey Kell went to the Yankees in the 35th round; righthander Craig Missigman of Olympic High School (which lost to Watauga High in the opening round of the Class 4A state playoffs) went to the New York Mets in the 37th round; and righthander Tyler Powell of Myers Park went to Texas in the 46th round.
Appalachian State did not have a player chosen in the draft. It's the first time in three years an ASU player wasn't drafted (the Mountaineers didn't have a player selected in the MLB draft from 1997-2007).
MLB DRAFT, ROUNDS 31-50
31ST ROUND - 1B MATT LEEDS, COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON, TEXAS RANGERS
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